This humidifier is one of the smaller, more affordable humidifiers on the market, and it doesn’t sacrifice any quality to get there. The official website rates the humidifier for up to 3000 square feet homes, which cover a lot of space. Even for tightly-built homes with good circulation that go over 3000 sq ft, customers have reported that the Aprilaire 500 has worked for them, too. The Aprilaire 500 gives you the features you would expect in a modern home appliance, with both automatic and manual control modes available. It operates from several sensors, from being hooked up to your thermostat to a temperature probe that leads to outside your home. All of these work together to control the humidity as accurately as possible.
Do You Need a Whole House Humidifier?
If you live in a dry climate or anywhere that gets really dry in the winter, then you probably suffer from the effects of air that’s too dry. Improper humidity can cause a lot of a health issues, but it can be inefficient to keep a tabletop humidifier in each room. It can cost a lot, and it definitely takes a lot of maintenance to rinse out your humidifier and clean it regularly. There are other ways to humidify your room, too, but a whole house humidifier is one of the most effective ways to maintain the humidity in your home with low maintenance needs.
Why Buy Aprilaire?
Aprilaire is a big name in the whole house humidifier market because they’re the pioneers of the whole house humidifier as you see it today. Their products are competitively priced while they deliver better performance than their competitors.
If you don’t already have a whole house humidifier installed in your home or had one at some point, installation is going to be a little more complicated. The Aprilaire 500 humidifier needs to be connected to your circulation system, the thermostat, and also needs a temperature probe that leads to the outside. You’ll need to be comfortable with using tools, cutting and working with ductwork, and electrical diagrams to get the humidifier connected.
The Aprilaire 500 is priced well even with anything extra you might pay for installation and mounting parts. If you enjoy DIY installation and can accept that the installation could take anywhere from several hours to a few days if you’re tight on time, doing the installation yourself could save you a lot of time while being a great learning experience
With a professional installation, you could be looking at doubling your original purchase price, but without a professional installation, your humidifier will not be covered by the official warranty. Paying a professional HVAC dealer to install your humidifier will definitely save you a lot of time and possibly some headache in the future.
Performance is where the Aprilaire 500 shines. It is one of the best options on the market for humidifying almost any home. With an official rating for up to 3000 sq ft, this covers a lot of space for most homes. As long as your home doesn’t have a lot of leaks or drafts, you’ll be able to keep the moisture in your home.
Most customers report that the Aprilaire 500 brought their home up by 20% from 15% to 35% in relative humidity easily in a couple of days. Once your humidifier brings the moisture up, it keeps it there easily throughout the season. On the very far end of the range, if you have a lot of dry furniture or things in your home to absorb any humidity, keep in mind that it could take up to a week to really get a comfortable humidity level going.
There are mixed reviews about the efficiency of the Aprilaire 500. Keep in mind the Aprilaire 500 is a flow-through style humidifier. Instead of using a reservoir to maintain the water you need to deliver to your evaporator, it directly flows water onto the water panel. Any extra water goes straight to the drain.
You have, however, a couple of ways to increase the efficiency of the Aprilaire 500. The first is the flow of water to your humidifier. You want the water panel to be saturated enough, but if you see a constant stream of water going into the drain, there’s too much water being delivered to your humidifier. The drain is placed so that you might not always be able to see the water coming out, so be sure to take a look. Reduce the water flow so that you’re just barely dripping water to reduce water consumption.
The other way to make sure your humidifier unit is working efficiently is to supply it with hot water. The warmer water will evaporate more moisture into the air, meaning your humidistat needs to turn on less often to increase the humidity.
Having a whole house humidifier might seem intimidating at first, but it actually takes less maintenance to keep one in your home. Unlike changing out the water in a tabletop humidifier everyday with weekly cleanings, your whole house flow-through humidifier can just be maintained annually. The biggest maintenance item is replacing your water panel every year and taking apart the water line system for inspection and any needed parts replacement. Although maintenance is a little more involved than cleaning a tabletop humidifier, you’ll spend far less time maintaining your humidifier throughout the year.
If you follow the maintenance schedule provided by Aprilaire, your humidifier will serve you for a long time. Since the humidifier delivers running water through many moving parts and lines, you can’t skip maintenance and expect it to last you a long time. Mineral and calcium buildup from the water can clog your humidifier down the road if you don’t maintain it.
Aprilaire still offers a great 5 year warranty on the humidifier itself, not including the water panel, which needs to be changed out every year of use.
Is the Aprilaire 500 Right for You?
The Aprilaire 500 is a great choice for any homeowner looking to humidify their entire home. Even with a professional installation, it’s price is great and it does a great job at humidifying most house sizes.
In terms of ownership, although there’s no reservoir to clean and disinfect regularly, you need to be ready to take care of the humidifier by following maintenance instructions every year. If you don’t, you could face regular repair bills instead. Aprilaire offers an amazing product that’ll benefit any homeowner that faces issues with dry air.